Thursday, April 14, 2011

'Shop for Schools 2010': Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market Raises $1.3 Million For Local Schools

Tesco's Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market has raised $1.3 million in its third annual Shop for Schools fundraising program - nearly double the amount raised last year - which it's giving to participating schools in California, Nevada and Arizona, where the fresh food and grocery chain has its 173 stores.

About 2,000 kindergarten through eighth grade schools participated in the 2010 school fundraising program, according to Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market. The program ran from September-December 2010.

Any kindergarten through eighth grade school located within a three-mile radius of a Fresh & Easy store can participate in Shop for Schools by signing up in advance of the program's start. For every $20 spent by customers at a Fresh & Easy store from September 15 to- December 31, 2010, participating schools received a $1 donation. In addition to collecting receipts, which the schools then submit to the grocery chain, registered schools can also participate in Fresh & Easy Shopping Nights, which are four hour (4 p.m.-8 p.m.) designated shopping blocks, organized for each specific participating school. Fresh & Easy donates 5% of all purchases made during the shopping night to the school. [Click here for the program's official rules.]

The three winning schools this year, one each in California, Nevada and Arizona, are:

>Southern California: Sunset View Elementary - which raised $10, 815 (first place)
>Arizona: Christ Lutheran School - which raised $8,114
>Nevada: R.E. Tobbler Elementary School - which raised $7,707

In addition the getting the amount of money they raised, Tesco's Fresh & Easy awarded each of the three winning schools a $5,000 bonus for raising the more money thn all the other participating schools.

This year's first place win is a repeat for Sunset View Elementary, which also took first place honors in last year's  Shop for Schools program. Watch and listen to the reaction of the school's Shop for Schools coordinator, Tori Curtis, and some of the Sunset Elementary students, in the brief video here, as they're told they've won for the second year in a row.

Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market first launched Shop for Schools  in spring 2009, raising more than $130,000 for schools in California, Nevada and Arizona. Last year (fall 2009) Fresh & Easy and its customers raised $670,000 for the participating schools. [See the stories linked at the end of this piece for details about the 2008-2009 programs.]

This year's record $1.3 million raised is due to a combination of factors, including: greater participation by schools, parents, teachers and students; more schools signing up for the program; the designated shopping nights; and the fact Tesco's Fresh & Easy opened numerous new stores in 2010, which expanded the geographical reach of the program.

That geographical reach will be even greater for the 2011 Shop for Schools program, which Fresh  Easy Neighborhood Market plans to kick-off in mid-May, because the grocery chain has now expanded into Northern California, where its opened eight stores so far this year, with three additional new units opening on April 27.

Additionally, for the first time Fresh & Easy is planning to offer schools the ability to register for the fundraising program online, which should make it even easier for more schools to get involved.

Numerous grocers are raising money for local schools. Among the major chains doing so include: Walmart Stores, Target, Safeway Stores, Inc., Kroger and others. Numerous local smaller chains, such as Mollie Stones Market's in Northern California and others, also regularly donate money to schools in their market regions.

The need by schools for supplemental monies from grocers and others continues to grow, particularly in states like California, Nevada and Arizona, where school budgets are being challenged do to serious financial stresses being experienced by state and local governments and public school districts.

For example, John P. Cole, a public school trustee in Clark County (Las Vegas) Nevada says about Fresh& Easy's Shop for Schools program and supplemental aid to schools in general: "I am thoroughly impressed that Fresh & Easy uses such an innovative and productive approach to becoming a welcome partner in its communities through assisting local schools. Although programs such as this should never be considered as a replacement of any of the state's responsibility to adequately fund education, it does allow local schools to raise funds for a wide variety of program uses. These kinds of community partnerships are a much needed boost in difficult times such as these," Cole says.

Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market will be posting information on its website in Mid-May about its 2011 Shop for Schools program.

Related Stories

September 16, 2010: Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market Launches 2010 'Shop for Schools' Program; Shopping Nights Add Foot Traffic & Sales

May 14, 2009: Fresh Buzz - News & Notes About Tesco's Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market: Fresh & Easy to Give $131,145 to Area Schools

February 9, 2009: Grocers & Community: 769 Schools in Southern California, Nevada and Arizona to Participate in Tesco Fresh & Easy's 'Shop For Schools' Program

January 23, 2009: Fresh & Charitable: Tesco's Fresh & Easy Extends Deadline For Schools to Register For School Fundraiser Program

December 17, 200: Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market Launches 'Shop for Schools' Fund-Raising Program to Aid Schools Near its Stores

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